Czech - wanted by authorities in connection with shocking abuse case -surfaces in Norway

Barbora Škrlová, photo: CTK

Barbora Škrlová, a 33-year old woman wanted by Czech authorities in connection with a brutal case of child-abuse in this country last year, has been extradited to the Czech Republic to face questioning. The public learned on Wednesday that the national was arrested by authorities after surfacing in Norway, where for months she got away with impersonating a 13-year old boy. It is the second time Ms Škrlová has gotten away with identity fraud, in a case that has shocked many in this country.

Barbora Škrlová, photo: CTK
The authorities have long wanted to question 33-year old Barbora Škrlová as a witness in one of the country’s most notorious cases of alleged child abuse. It is thought she might hold some of the answers in a case which made headlines last year when an unsuspecting neighbour in the town of Kuřim, Moravia, accidentally discovered that an 8-year old boy living next door was being abused by his mother. When the police arrived to investigate the matter they found the boy - Ondřej Mauer - bound and naked in a basement closet. His mother, now in custody, was taking care of two other children, one of them 12-year old Anička, thought to be adopted, who was also believed to have suffered abuse. But in reality, Anička, who later escaped from a Czech children’s home, was found out to be none other than the 33-year old Barbora Škrlová. After duping the authorities, she fled the country. She resurfaced only briefly in Denmark before disappearing without a trace.

Barbora Skrlova as 'Adam', photo: CTK
It turns out Ms Škrlová made her way to Norway. Once there with the help of accomplices, she successfully fooled authorities again – this time that she was a 13-year old boy. With a shaved head, she assumed a new false identity as “Adam” and was registered at a local school. Eventually, teachers grew suspicious, but the turn-around came in December when, Škrlová - under the boy’s guise - contacted a Czech children’s safety line on the internet, saying she was at a children’s home in Oslo and that she had been abused. The man posing as her father was arrested for suspected child abuse, and later released when Ms Škrlová’s true age and identity were revealed after she herself was apprehended.

How does it all tie together? The investigation into the original abuse case of 8-year old Ondřej is on-going and theories abound, most of them horrific. There is speculation that not only Ondřej - but also 33-year old Barbora Škrlová – were victims. Psychologists who came into contact with her have indicated she may have been pressured by others in her behaviour; at least one specialist said she displayed certain psychotic tendencies. Some sources, including the daily Mlada fronta Dnes, have pointed to the possible involvement of a cult network, while others have speculated over the involvement of a possible child-porn ring and even illegal trade in human organs. It will now be up to Czech investigators to try and get to the bottom of the case. There is hope that - with Barbora Škrlová in custody at last - they may be able to uncover evidence which has so far eluded them.